Nike are not wrong when they say 'Just Do It'.
My honest opinion on how people try to start into fitness these days is that they look into it toooo much. Obviously you want to make a little plan for yourself, and you may need to get some basic fitness gear before you start, some leggings, shorts, training top. But please, for the love of all that is good, do not spend a ridiculous amount of time, energy and money investigating into the best plans around, or the best gym gear or protein powder or whatever. Just start. Join a gym, and get ANY reputable plan and stick with it. It doesn't have to cost you an arm and a leg. Because when things cost an arm and a leg, we are creating barriers to our progress. We are GIVING ourselves an excuse not to continue. Just get up, get moving, and feed good food to your body. I will do a 'what I eat in a day' post soon, and give lil tips and tricks as I go. I ain't no expert and am not claiming to be, but working in a pharmacy, people tell me regularly how they're not making any progress, and they're just missing one thing: willpower.
If you have used any of the following excuses, then you know what I mean:
'it was too expensive and I wasn't using it enough'
'I didn't have the time to go...'
'I was too tired to go before/after work'
'I wasn't seeing any results'
A lot of people will half-try things once and never try again. They say you should try a food 5 times before you truly know if you like it or not, and I think that same mentality of sticking with something before you give up on it, could be applied to a lot of things in life, and especially to fitness. The list of excuses goes on and on but basically if you want to see results in terms of losing weight/becoming more lean, you just need to move more and eat less. For some people the likes of slimming world, weight watchers etc is their key to success. The real key to success though, whatever way you choose to go about it, whether it is classes, or a weight loss program, or self-motivated gym sessions, is that you HAVE to stick with it. Even on the days when you don't feel up to it. When has anyone ever regretted exercise? Or a good healthy meal? Never. We regret not going to the gym, or having a whole tub of ice cream (or both if you ate the whole tub of ice cream instead of going to the gym lol). Make good choices.
Oh that dreaded little voice in your head. She appears on payday, in the Victoria's Secret sale, when you're browsing Instagram and a sponsored ad from Gymshark pops up.. (I SWEAR I haven't given in to any of those... ;) ). She also appears when you walk by Offbeat donuts, Gino's Gelato, Nandos (cheeky)... etc. And sometimes we will give in and have a cheeky Nandos, or a scoop of ice cream, or a lovely little bar of chocolate on the bus home. There is nothing wrong with that. The problem is when the Nandos is not cheeky anymore, or when a treat of chocolate is a whole share-size bar, and a few times a week at that. Or a bag of crisps every day with your lunch. Plan ahead, and pack your lunch the night before, with plenty of fruit, a protein bar/healthy snack and a salad/salad wrap etc. You get the idea. Just make sure a treat doesn't turn into part of your daily meal/routine, then it's not a treat anymore, it's just a bad diet. Be honest with yourself about what you're eating and if you're genuinely not sure if what you're eating is good or not, read the info on the back and educate yourself about what's good or bad. Try not to eat processed foods, watch your portion size, and eat little and often. Indulge, but don't overindulge. And for the love of god don't lose your shit on a night out. Sure have cheeky McNuggets afterwards but you don't need 4 cheeseburgers, a large coke and share box of nuggets to yourself. Don't mess up your hard work. It's not worth it!
Take home message: Everything in moderation, baby.
Set little goals!
Remember that Rome wasn't built in a day. Your fitness journey is a marathon not a sprint. Have a notebook and log your progress. An example of a set of goals (this would be like what I'd set for myself) would be..
1. Drink at least 1.5 L of water per day
2. Drink less tea/coffee (it dehydrates you, incase you didn't know)
3. Get to bed earlier, and wake up earlier
4. Go to the gym at least 4 times a week
5. Stretch every single day! (get that blood flowinggg and those muscles moving - good to do in the morning!)
Setting little goals like this every week, rather than goals like cut out 1000 cals, lose 5kg, like crazy stuff, or long term goals.. are just not as attainable. You will make much more progress by micro-tracking your progress, and take pictures of your body as you go! You will be amazed how by achieving your goals, incorporating these as part of your routine and then making other small changes as you go, your overall fitness and health will improve.
Don't be too hard on yourself. Be ambitious, but just remember the marathon - you have to work on sustainable healthy living - as well as targeting your health goals - but to lose 5kg fast by cutting out carbs or something extreme like a juice cleanse - this is just not sustainable. Achieve long term success by planning daily/weekly goals on a smaller scale. You will then lose that 5kg, and keep that 5 kg off with your sustainable changes, rather than just by using some laxative detox tea (lol bit of shade)
i'll be sharing my weekly goals on here and how successful I am with them and touching on this subject further in the future, with meal ideas and workout successes/failures.